Differentiation and roles of bone marrow-derived cells on the tumor microenvironment of oral squamous cell carcinoma

Chang Anqi, Kiyofumi Takabatake, Hotaka Kawai, O. O. May Wathone, Saori Yoshida, Masae Fujii, Haruka Omori, Shintaro Sukegawa, Keisuke Nakano, Hidetsugu Tsujigiwa, Zheng Jinhua, Hitoshi Nagatsuka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The stroma affects the properties and dynamics of the tumor. Previous studies have demonstrated that bone marrow-derived cells (BMDCs) possess the capability of differentiating into stromal cells. However, the characteristics and roles of BMDCs in oral squamous cell carcinoma remain unclear. The current study therefore investigated their locations and features by tracing green fluorescent protein (GFP)-labeled BMDCs in a transplantation mouse model. After irradiation, BALB-c nu-nu mice were injected with bone marrow cells from C57BL/6-BALB-C-nu/nu-GFP transgenic mice. These recipient mice were then injected subcutaneously in the head with human squamous cell carcinoma-2 cells. Immunohistochemistry for GFP, Vimentin, CD11b, CD31 and α-smooth muscle actin (SMA), and double-fluorescent immunohistochemistry for GFP-Vimentin, GFP-CD11b, GFP-CD31 and GFP-α-SMA was subsequently performed. Many round-shaped GFP-positive cells were observed in the cancer stroma, which indicated that BMDCs served a predominant role in tumorigenesis. Vimentin(+) GFP(+) cells may also be a member of the cancer-associated stroma, originating from bone marrow. Round or spindle-shaped CD11b(+) GFP(+) cells identified in the present study may be macrophages derived from bone marrow. CD31(+)GFP(+) cells exhibited a high tendency towards bone marrow-derived angioblasts. The results also indicated that spindle-shaped α-SMA(+) GFP(+) cells were not likely to represent bone marrow-derived cancer-associated fibroblasts. BMDCs gathering within the tumor microenvironment exhibited multilineage potency and participated in several important processes, such as tumorigenesis, tumor invasion and angiogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6628-6638
Number of pages11
JournalOncology Letters
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Bone marrow-derived cells
  • Cancer stroma
  • Green f luorescence protein transplanted mouse
  • Oral cancer
  • Tumor microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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